Mar 30, 2014 10:26 PM by Tony Spehar
Monday marks the birthday of civil rights activist Cesar Chavez, on Sunday the Colorado Latino Forum honored him with the first Cesar Chavez celebration to be held in Colorado Springs in five-years.
Colorado is one of only a few states to mark Cesar Chavez day as an official holiday. On Sunday Chavez was hailed as a trailblazer who represented thousands of struggling farm workers. Aztec dancers lead a parade from the Pioneers Museum to Acacia Park for performances and speeches about issues still facing the Latino community.
"There are still people that are invisible in society and like Cesar Chavez we need to open our eyes, see that, and see what we can do to really address our human needs," said UCCS Vice Chancellor of Diversity and Inclusiveness Kee Warner. "The spirit of Cesar Chavez and his commitment to social justice."
Many of the celebration's organizers said they were surprised by the turn-out, they estimated around 200 people gathered in Acacia Park.
"I think it shows the importance of the Hispanic history of the region," said Fawn-Amber Montoya, a professor at CSU Pueblo. "But also how many Latino people you have and that they actually have a place to come and gather and talk about their history and their heritage."
Organizers said they hope to make the Colorado Springs celebration of Cesar Chavez and annual event.